Three Score & Ten: A Voice to the People: 70 Years of the Oldest Independant Record Label in Great Britain [Audio CD Box set] @ Amazon  -  £43.17
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Three Score & Ten: A Voice to the People: 70 Years of the Oldest Independant Record Label in Great Britain [Audio CD Box set] @ Amazon - £43.17

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Found 18th Jan 2012
Product Description
BBC Review
Topic Records is an extraordinary institution. Founded 70 years ago, it can rightly claim to be the oldest truly independent record label in the UK, and has had an enormous impact on the development of the folk music scene in Britain.

With folk now back in fashion, it’s appropriate that Topic should celebrate its birthday in style, and this elaborately packaged set does just that. The seven CDs are cleverly positioned within the hardback cover of a well-illustrated 100-page book that tells the story of the record label, from the late 30s through to the present day, with photos and features on the key figures involved. These include the singer and songwriter Ewan MacColl, whose 1952 recording of the classic Dirty Old Town is included, through to the Waterson Family and singer and guitarist Martin Carthy – and even that veteran American folk hero Pete Seeger.

Topic started out as a staunchly left-wing label. It was founded by the Workers’ Music Association, an offshoot of the British Marxist Party, at a time when the growth of fascism elsewhere in the world had led to an upsurge in socialism in Britain. Members of the WMA included such distinguished composers and musicians as Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears, and the aim of Topic was to promote music that “exerts an influence against the social injustices of our present society”. As the CDs here prove, the label did just that – and much more besides. It released, and continues to release, music by great folk singers, singer-songwriters and experimental musicians who have used the folk tradition as their starting point.

The first and last CDs in the set show off the label’s range, from the extraordinary guitar work of the late Davy Graham and his classic Angi (first recorded for Topic in 1963) through to the traditional singing of June Tabor and the classic American blues of Jesse Fuller. Other CDs are devoted solely to English traditional songs, with contributions from those great 60s stars Shirley Collins and Anne Briggs, or to Irish and Scottish songs, or to songwriters, with contribution here from Linda Thompson, guitarist Martin Simpson, and that adventurous contemporary singer-songwriter, Eliza Carthy. And, of course, there’s a CD of left-wing songs, including Topic’s first-ever release from back in 1939 – The Man That Waters the Workers’ Beer.

Anyone who appreciates great folk music should check this out. --Robin Denselow

Track Listings
Disc: 1
1. The Humpback Whale - Nic Jones
2. Angi - Davy Graham
3. The Shaskeen Reel - John Wright
4. The Lancashire Toreadors - The Oldham Tinkers
5. Sullivan's March - Pat Mitchell
6. San Francisco Bay Blues - Jesse Fuller
7. Country Gardens - William Kimber
8. Tamlyn - Mike Waterson
9. The Air for Maurice Ogg / Jumping Jack / The Air for Maurice Ogg - Alistair Anderson
10. Creeping Jane - Joseph Taylor
11. Wasps In The Woodpile - Andrew Cronshaw
12. Prince Heathen - Martin Carthy with Dave Swarbrick
13. The Bonny Labouring Boy - Harry Cox
14. Rawtenstall Annual Fair - Lee Nicholson
15. Music For A Found Harmonium - Patrick Street
16. Bitter Withy - John Tams
Disc: 2
1. The Nut Dance (excerpt) - The Britannia Coconut Dancers
2. Spencer The Rover - Bob and Ron Copper
3. All Things Are Quite Silent - Shirley Collins
4. Blackwater Side - Anne Briggs
5. The Two Magicians - A L Lloyd
6. Scan's Polkas - Oak
7. The Crafty Maid's Policy - Frankie Armstrong
8. A Place Called England - June Tabor
9. When I Die - Peter Bellamy
10. The Bold Princess Royal - Sam Larner
11. Hal-An-Tow - The Watersons
12. We Shepherds Are The Best of Men - Fred Jordan
13. The Rose Of Britain's Isle / Glorishears - John Kirkpatrick and Sue Harris
14. Riding Down To Portsmouth - Tom Willett
15. Higher Germany - Phoebe Smith
16. The Ideal Schottische - The Cheviot Ranters
17. The Methody Parson - Roy Harris
18. The Maid And The Palmer - Brass Monkey
19. Hopping Down In Kent - Louie Fuller
20. The Devil And The Farmer's Wife - Walter Pardon
Disc: 3
1. The Rising Sun / The Pope's Toe - Jackie Daly
2. The Waterford Boys - Paddy Tunney
3. The Banks Of Red Roses - Sarah Makem
4. Gillan's Apples / The Prize Jig - John Doonan & John Wright
5. Slieve Gallon Brae - The Mcpeake Family
6. Paddy Ryan's Dream / Mamma's Pet - Seamus Tansey With Reg Hall
7. My Irish Molly O - The Flanagan Brothers
8. The Blackbird - Seamus Ennis
9. The Factory Girl - Margaret Barry
10. Roaring Mary / The Old Torn Petticoat - The Irish Country Four
11. Spailpina Run - Sean Mac Donnchadha
12. The Choice Wife - Willie Clancy
13. The Tinker's Old Budget - Mary Ann Carolan
14. Padraig O'keefe's / Con Cassidy's - The Boys Of The Lough
15. Dowd's Favourite - Hugh Gillespie
16. Wife Of The Bold Tenant Farmer - Joe Heaney
17. The Music In The Glen / The Greenfields Of America - The O'halloran Brothers
18. The Knight Templar's Dream - Len Graham
19. The Yellow Tinker / The Humours Of Scarriff - Sean O'shea & Bobby Casey
20. He Rolled Her To The Wall - Frank Harte
21. The Heather Breeze / The Traveller - The Russell Family
22. The Patriot Game - Dominic Behan
23. The Belfast Hornpipe / The Rights Of Man - John Rea
24. Bridie Morley / Duignan's Favourite - Packie Duignan & Seamus Horan
Disc: 4
1. Miss Drummond Of Perth / Fiddler's Joy / Traditional Reel / The Shetland Reel - Battlefield Band
2. Come All Ye Fisher Lasses - The Fisher Family
3. Queen Among The Heather - Belle Stewart
4. Cullen Bay / Jig O'slurs / Seagull - Kentigern
5. Wi My Roving Eye - Norman Kennedy
6. Blue Bleezin' Blind Drunk - Cilla Fisher
7. Soldier's Joy - Tom Anderson & Aly Bain
8. The Dowie Dens Of Yarrow - Gordeanna Mcculloch
9. Erin Go Bragh - Dick Gaughan
10. Young Jimmy Foyers - Sheila Stewart
11. Kempy Kaye - Jock Tamson's Bairns
12. Lady Eliza - Winnie Campbell
13. Tilley Plump / Auld Foula Reel / Oot And In Da Harbour - Curlew
14. Herd Laddie O' The Glen - Willie Scott
15. The Fireman's Not For Me - Isla Cameron
16. Dance With Me, Morag - Isabel Sutherland
17. The Wind That Blew The Bonnie Lassie's Plaidie Awa' - Jimmy Mcbeath
18. Maccrimmon's Lament - Jeannie Robertson
19. The Gallant Forty Twa - Ian Manuel
20. The Twa Corbies - Ray & Archie Fisher
21. Boulavogue - Davie Stewart
22. The Wandering Piper - John Burgess
Disc: 5
1. Unity (Raise Your Banners High) - John Tams
2. The Dominion of the Sword - Martin Carthy
3. The Sun Is Burning - The Ian Campbell Folk Group
4. Go Down Ye Murderers - Ewan Maccoll
5. Police Patrol - Bob Davenport
6. Two Tears - Eliza Carthy
7. Never Any Good - Martin Simpson
8. Both Sides of the Tweed - Dick Gaughan
9. George's Son - John Kirkpatrick with Brass Monkey
10. Reconciliation - Ron Kavana
11. Stumbling On - Lal Waterson & Oliver Knight
12. Acceptable Losses - John B Spencer
13. Ships of Shame - Steve Ashley
14. The Land of Three Rivers - Vin Garbutt
15. No Telling - Linda Thompson
16. Dust - Johnny Handle
17. Two-Fisted Heroes - Bill Caddick
Disc: 6
1. The Man Who Watered the Worker's Beer - Paddy Ryan
2. Talking Union Blues - Pete Seeger
3. Joe Hill - Paul Robeson
4. Masters of War - Martin Simpson
5. The Red Flag - Bob Smith's Ideal Band
6. The Blackleg Miners - Louis Killen
7. No Power On Earth - Billy Bennett
8. The Internationale - The Topic Singers & Band
9. To the Begging I Will Go - Ewan Maccoll
10. The Hand-Loom Weaver's Lament - Harry Boardman
11. The Rigs of the Time - Shirley Collins
12. Greedy Landlord - Stan Kelly With Leon Rosselson
13. Time to Ring Some Changes - Richard Thompson
14. Sixteen Tons - Ewan Maccoll
15. Peat Bog Soldiers - The Ian Campbell Folk Group
16. Aa'm Glad The Strike's Done - The High Level Ranters
17. Threes Score and Ten - The Watersons
18. Dirty Old Town - Ewan Maccoll
19. The Liverpool Barrow Boys - The Spinners
20. The Weaver's March - The Celebrated Working Men's Band
21. We Poor Labouring Men - Waterson:Carthy
22. Perfumes Of Arabia - Martin Carthy & Dave Swarbrick
23. Hot Asphalt - Bob Davenport & The Rakes
Disc: 7
1. Skye Crofter's / The Swallow Tail - Billy Pigg
2. While Gamekeeper's Lie Sleeping - June Tabor
3. Boi Se Otvori - Roza Tsetkova
4. Barleycorn - Tim Van Eyken
5. The Girl on the Greenbriar Shore - Tom Paley & Peggy Seeger
6. The Happy One-Step / Green Willis - The House Band
7. Clyde Water - Nic Jones
8. Baranca - Vlado & Nikola Robanovski
9. Georgie - Levi Smith
10. Jenny Lind - Scan Tester & Rabbidy Baxter
11. Worcester City - Eliza Carthy
12. Talking Dustbowl Blues - Ramblin' Jack Elliott
13. Kaba Vence - Refki Taho, Hysen Zizolli & Ahmet Metolli
14. The Green Banks of Yarrow - Alison Mcmorland & Peta Webb
15. Johnny, Will You Marry Me? - Dan Sullivan's Shamrock Band
16. Hamburger - Polka Fra Hardanger - Vestlandsgruppa
17. Hedger And Ditcher - The Silly Sisters
18. Burren No. 1 / Chris Droney's Favourite - Chris Droney
19. Nna Hamu - The Jauharah Orchestra
20. Little Sadie - Hedy West
21. Fulmine - Andy Cutting (Blowzabella)
22. No One Stands Alone - Blue Murder
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£39.99 at both HMV and Play - both with quidco
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